James 3 Expanded Bible (EXB)
Controlling the Things We Say
3 My ·brothers and sisters [C fellow believers], not many of you should become teachers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly [Luke 12:48]. 2 We all ·make many mistakes [L stumble in many ways]. If people ·never said anything wrong [L did not stumble in speech/teaching/word], they would be perfect and able to ·control their entire selves, too [L bridle their whole body also]. 3 When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we ·can control [guide; direct] their whole bodies. 4 Also a ship is very big, and it is pushed by ·strong [fierce] winds. But a very small rudder ·controls [guides; steers] that big ship, making it go wherever the pilot wants. 5 It is the same with the tongue. It is a small ·part [member] of the body, but it ·brags [boasts] about great things.
A big forest fire can be started with only a little flame. 6 And the tongue is like a fire. It is a whole world of ·evil [iniquity; unrighteousness] among ·the parts of our bodies [L our members]. The tongue ·spreads its evil through [pollutes; stains; corrupts] the whole body. The tongue is set on fire by hell [L Gehenna; C a valley outside of Jerusalem where in the OT period children were sacrificed to a pagan god; later used as a burning trash heap; a metaphor for hell], and it starts a fire that influences ·all of life [L the wheel of birth/life]. 7 [L For] People can tame every ·kind [species] of wild animal, bird, reptile, and ·fish [L sea creature], and they have tamed them, 8 but no one can tame the tongue. It is ·wild and evil [or a restless evil; or an uncontrollable evil] and full of deadly poison. 9 ·We use our tongues to [L With it we] ·praise [bless] our Lord and Father, but ·then [L with it] we curse people, whom God made ·like himself [L in his likeness; Gen. 1:27]. 10 Praises and curses come from the same mouth! My ·brothers and sisters [C fellow believers], this should not happen. 11 Do ·good [fresh; L sweet] and ·bad [stale; or salt; L bitter] water flow from the same [L opening of a] spring? 12 My ·brothers and sisters [C fellow believers], can a fig tree make olives, or can a grapevine make figs? No! ·And a well full of salty water cannot give good water [L Neither can salt water make sweet].
13 Are there those among you who are truly wise and ·understanding [insightful; discerning]? Then they should show it by ·living right [their good life/conduct/lifestyle] and ·doing good things [their deeds/works] with a ·gentleness [humility; meekness; Matt. 5:5; 11:29; Gal. 6:1] that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter ·jealousy [or envy] and ·are selfish [have selfish ambition] in your hearts, do not ·brag [boast; Jer. 9:23–24]. Your ·bragging [boasting] is a lie ·that hides [that denies; L against] the truth [or Don’t cover up the truth with bragging or lying]. 15 That kind of “wisdom” does not come ·from God [L down from above; C that is, from heaven] but ·from the world [is earthly]. It is ·not spiritual [natural; “soulish”; C human life apart from God; 1 Cor. 2:14]; it is ·from the devil [demonic]. 16 Where ·jealousy [or envy] and ·selfishness [selfish ambition] are, there will be ·confusion [chaos; disorder] and every ·kind of evil [evil thing/practice]. 17 But the wisdom that comes from ·God [L above; 3:15] is first of all pure, then peaceful [peace-loving], gentle [patient; considerate], and ·easy to please [or willing to yield; or open to reason]. This wisdom is ·always ready to help those who are troubled and to do good for others [L full of mercy and good fruits]. It is ·always fair [impartial] and ·honest [sincere; unhypocritical]. 18 ·People who work for peace in a peaceful way plant a good crop of right living [or Peacemakers who sow with peace will harvest a crop of justice/righteousness; Gal. 5:22–23].
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
It looks like you’re already subscribed to Bible Gateway Plus! To manage your subscription, visit your Bible Gateway account settings.
Upgrade, and get the most out of your new account. An integrated digital Bible study library - including complete notes from the NIV Study Bible and the NKJV MacArthur Study Bible - is just a step away! Try it free for 30 days.
Three easy steps to start your free trial subscription to Bible Gateway Plus.